Drivers Can Avoid Distracted Driving
The National Highway Transportation Highway Safety Administration confirmed that In 2014 more than 3,100 people died as a result of distracted driving. Although there are many types of distractions drivers face while driving, the most dangerous is texting. Texting is extremely dangerous because it takes the eyes off the road and the hands off the wheel.
Drivers continue to receive and send texts while driving. Sending a text or reading a text can take a driver’s eyes and hands off the wheel for 4 seconds or more. The distance travelled in 4 seconds if the speed is approximately 85km/hr is the length of a football field. Imagine what a driver can miss in that distance if their eyes are not on the road.
Despite continued awareness campaigns, drivers continue to drive distracted, and it is not just texting and driving. Drivers continue to eat and drink behind the wheel, change the radio station, fiddle with the GPS and engage with passengers in the front and rear seats.
Simple Solution to Distracted Driving
The simple solution to all of these distractions is to simply not do them while driving, yet drivers continue to engage in distracted driving behaviours. As a quick solution, drivers can put away their phones in the glove box to avoid any temptations a cell phone may generate. A message can be added to the phone to respond to incoming texts and calls indicating that the recipient is engaged in driving and will get back to the caller or texter.
Pre-programming a GPS prior to driving is a great idea to avoid any fiddling with the device while driving. The same should be done to the radio. Avoid changing stations while driving. Focus on the road. Pick a station and stick to it if you need to have music.
If you experience passenger issues, pull over in a safe area and deal with them directly. Drivers should never look back or sideways to attend to a passenger or unruly children.
Drivers forget that they need to take the responsibility of driving seriously and make good decisions while driving. One bad decision can cause a crash that could have serious or fatal consequences. Young Drivers of Canada would like to remind drivers to get back to the basics and leave the distractions at the car door. Remember, driving is a privilege and not a right!